The sciatic nerve is the largest nerve in the body, measuring 3/4 of an inch in diameter, and extending from the base of the spine all the way down each leg to the foot. Due to its size, a pinched sciatic nerve can be extremely painful. A pinched sciatic nerve generally refers to a compression at the nerve root – where it protrudes from the spine. At that point, the space allotted for the nerve to emerge from the spine can be crowded by several different causes, causing a pinching of the nerve at that point.
Many doctors will say that a herniated disk is the most common cause of a pinched sciatic nerve, but others differ to the point of saying that it’s most often psycho-somatic. Many sciatica sufferers who go to a medical doctor seeking help are given the choice of drugs or surgery. These choices are extremely limited, however, as there are many other ways to treat sciatica without drugs or surgery, as both of these options can have some very serious side-effects.
Natural solutions exist, and should always be consulted before resorting to drugs or surgery. Some common natural approaches include chiropractic, herbs, exercises, yoga, stretching, good old-fashioned rest, acupuncture, aromatherapy, special sciatica chairs and chair pads, heat and cold, and more. As you can see. there is no shortage of therapies for treating a pinched sciatic nerve. Even though the above therapies are natural, many people opt for drugs and surgery because their own participation is minimal -i.e. they don’t want to do a daily exercise or stretching regimen, or they don’t want to go to the chiropractor over and over again for adjustments that may or may not work.